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Articles of 2006

What’s Going On In Asia?



Pongsaklek Wonjongkam has been ordered by the WBC to make his mandatory defense against current WBC International champion and number one contender Monelisi Myekeni of South Africa. The long-awaited bout with Jorge “Travieso” Arce is not going to happen as Arce can no longer make the 112 lb. limit.

“It is absolutely mandatory that Pongsaklek Wonjongkam fights the WBC top contender, “said Sulaiman. “This division has had some controversies in the recent past, but it would be unfair to blame the boxer, who is a hero inside and outside the ring.”

If no agreement is reached through free negotiations, a purse offer has been ordered for June 16 in Mexico City.

Does it come as a shock to anyone that Wonjongkam won’t be fighting Arce?

The biggest shock would come if he were to fight someone with an easy to pronounce name like Parra, Pacheco, Kelly or even Darchinyan.

* * *

The WBC has confirmed that their light flyweight world champion, Brian Viloria, is unsure of when he will be able to make the next defense of his title. As a result, the WBC has ordered their mandatory challenger, Juanito Rubillar (39-9-7, 17 KO’s) of the Philippines to fight the number two ranked contender, Wandee Singwangcha (48-7-1, 10 KO’s) of Thailand for the interim title.

WBC President Jose Sulaiman stated “Viloria will fight the winner when he is ready to resume his boxing career. The winner of Rubillar vs. Singwancha must fight Viloria whenever he is ready and fit to fight.” Thailand’s Naris Boxing Promotion won the purse bid for the fight which is tentatively scheduled to take place in Bangkok on July 22nd.

* * *

With just over six weeks left before Manny Pacquiao’s July 2nd date with Oscar Larios, trainer Freddie Roach has instituted a closed-door policy for the champion’s training camp. Roach has admitted publicly to fearing his charge might take Larios for granted and also revealed that both Marco Antonio Barrera and Erik “El Terrible” Morales avoided fighting Larios, whose manager Rafael Mendoza insisted Larios was better than both legendary Mexicans.

“I believe Larios is better than Morales and Barrera, that's why he can beat Pacquiao. I believe he has the stamina and the guts to face Pacquiao. Those are the things Barrera and Morales didn't have.”

* * *

Former WBC champion Veeraphol Sahaprom (64-6) has decided to resume his career after suffering a devastating kayo at the hands of Hozumi Hasegawa in his recent attempt at regaining the WBC bantamweight title. Sahaprom faces Hidenobu Honda (26-4, 14 KO’s) August 18th in an attempt to get his career back on track. Honda is a dangerous fight for Sahaprom but has failed in two previous attempts at winning a world championship, first dropping a unanimous decision to current WBC flyweight champion Pongsaklek Wonjongkam and then losing a decision to former WBA super flyweight champion Alexander Munoz.

* * *

Lightweight contender Sirimongkol Singwancha has been forced to withdraw from his May 20th bout against Chikashi Inada when it was discovered Singwancha has hepatitis. According to his management team, Singwancha will fight the winner of Chikashi Inada and late replacement Jose Armando Santa Cruz to determine who will challenge for the lightweight title.

* * *

First, former WBA champion Yodsanan Sor Nanthachai’s bout with Robbie Peden was cancelled. Then Sor Nathachai was scheduled to fight Manuel Medina but this fight was cancelled as well. Manuel Medina is now slated to face Cassius Baloyi for the vacant IBF and IBO Super Featherweight title. Sor Nanthachai will move up to the 135 lb. division.

Upcoming Fights in Asia

June 2, 2006 – Nakornsawan, Thailand
Ratanachai Sor Vorapin vs. Pedro Laurente

Sor Vorapin tries to return to his winning ways over a fighter he should easily defeat. This fight proves little and does nothing to show Sor Vorapin still belongs at the top of the heap.

June 3, 2006 – Glorietta, Makiti, Philippines
Randy Suico vs. Pongpetch Chutwana

Suico should have no problem with this Thai punching bag – if he does, it’s time to think about finding another career.

June 15 or July 15, 2006 – Swissotel, Singapore (***Tentative Date***)
Daudy Bahari vs. Bart Abapo

Singapore plays host to it’s second-ever boxing event. Bahari and Abapo aren’t exactly household names, even in S.E. Asia, but the fight should at least be competitive.

June 23, 2006
Devid Lookmahanak vs. Yuki Murai
Thong Por Chokchai vs. Kosuke Iwashita

Undefeated super flyweight prospect Devid Lookmahanak goes against yet another Japanese fighter who is probably tough in enough to give him some rounds but has little chance of winning. This is the fifth such Japanese fighter in-a-row he’s faced and it’s time for the prospect to face someone who actually has a good chance of beating him.

July 2, 2006 – Areneta Coliseum, Manila, Philippines
Manny Pacquiao vs. Oscar Larios
WBC International Super Featherweight Title

Everybody’s talking about what Pacquaio’s doing or not doing and how he needs to stay focused. Oscar Larios is training hard and is hungry to not only make the bout competitive but to score the upset.

Larios may have his moments but even on a bad day Pacquaio has what it takes to get the “W”. If Larios fights the fight of his life and makes no mistakes, maybe he has a shot – otherwise, Pacquaio KO 11.

Gerry Penalosa vs. Gerson Guerro

Penalosa is a ring-worn 33 years of age and while Guerro is no budding superstar, he’ll force Penalosa to work for as long as it lasts. Somebody is going to sleep in this one.

Jimrex Jaca vs. Adrian Valdez

Valdez has logged rounds with good opposition and Jaca will have his hands full with him; Jaca has faced an overabundance of punching bags. He knocked out Bobby Pacquiao in one but Bobby isn’t Manny and doesn’t make a career. Valdez by decision.

Rey Bautistita vs. Alejandro Felix Montiel

Bautista faces a stiff test in Montiel and how he fares will shed some light on just how good he is.

July 2, 2006 – Jakarta, Indonesia (***Tentative Date***)
Chris John vs. Renan Acosta
WBA Featherweight Title

John gets a freebie after his tough fight with Marquez.

July 15, 2006 – Korakuen Hall, Tokyo, Japan
Hozumi Hasegawa vs. Genaro Garcia
WBC Bantamweight Title

Hasegawa proved he’s no joke in the return match against Sahaprom and did what was expected of him. Now he takes on Garcia.

July 22, 2006 – Bangkok, Thailand
Wandee Singwancha vs. Juanito Rubillar
WBC Interim Light Flyweight Title

I doubt either of these guys can beat Viloria but Rubillar has a better shot than Singwancha. Rubillar by close decision – unless he gets mugged in Bangkok.

Articles of 2006

Peter/Toney Ii: Peter Has The Brutal Punch



Samuel Peter claims he has dynamites in my two hands?

Heavyweight contenders Samuel “The Nigerian Nightmare” Peter and James Lights Out? Toney get it on a second time this Saturday from the Seminole Hard Rock in Hollywood, Fla. (Showtime).

The hard-slugging Peter, unlike Toney, is one of those strong, silent types notorious for letting their fists to the talking one the opening bell sounds, but the Nigeria Nightmare is as confident as ever and determined to turn Lights Out’s lights out for good.

I have got dynamites in my two hands,? said Peter, according the Lagos, Nigeria Vanguard, and I will crush James Toney once and for all. The Toney camp made the mistake of their lives by protesting and seeking a rematch. I am ready to teach him a bitter lesson.?

Sam Peter walked away with the W for Peter/Toney I at the Staples Center in LA last September, but it was by disputed split decision a verdict so disputed, there was even a dispute about the dispute which forced the WBC’s hand into mandating Saturday’s rematch.

Samuel Peter is the biggest thing to hit African boxing since Ghanaian superstar Azumah Nelson rocked the feather and junior welterweight divisions. The President of the Nigeria Boxing Board of Control, Prince Olaide Adeboye, admitted, according to, We are rooting for Samuel Peter, of course. He is one boy we believe in to bring back the country’s lost glory in professional boxing. I am personally making arrangement to be at the ringside to see him fight Toney again. I was at the first fight in Los Angeles in September.

Peter has the brutal punch, and to me he was the clear winner of the first fight. But the WBC Board of Governors, of which I am a member, voted 21-10 for a rematch. There was nothing those of us Africans on the board could do in the circumstances. But I believe Peter will confirm he is better than Toney and will then go ahead to meet the champion and claim the belt for Nigeria and Africa.?

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Articles of 2006

The Sweet Science P4P Rankings for Asia



There are claims that boxing is dying. Hogwash. The heavyweight division isn’t the only division in boxing and 2007 promises to be a banner year in boxing; especially for boxers hailing from Asia.

While Asia isn’t Vegas or Atlantic City, it is a region packed of diamonds in the rough; undiscovered gems and potential superstars who wait for their moment in the sun.

The Sweet Science P4P Rankings – Asia

1) Manny Pacquiao – There’s no way to dispute Pacquiao is the best fighter in Asia, if not all of boxing. He’s exciting, he wins with Je Ne Sais Quois and is definitely “the man” in boxing.

2) Pongsaklek Wonjongkam – Although his competition leaves much to be desired, his longevity and skills are undeniable. He is currently Thailand’s only world champion and is undefeated in ten years. Need I say more?

3) Chris John – A victory over Juan Manuel Marquez, however controversial, shows he belongs at the top of the heap. He easily outpointed Renan Acosta to close out 2006 and should have no trouble defending against Jose Rojas in February. A fight with Pacquiao would not be a good move on his part but a rematch with Marquez would not hurt – especially if he defeats the Mexican again.

4) Hozumi Hasegawa – Hidden away in Japan, Hasegawa is a sharp punching southpaw who put former champion Veeraphol Sahaprom to sleep. He recently bested Genaro Garcia and his herky-jerky style will give fits to any one who steps in the ring with him.

5) Masomori Tokuyama – Tokuyama has never shied away from a good fight and although he only fought once in 2006 (UD12 Jose Navarro), he ledger shows wins over Katsushige Kawashima (twice), Gerry Penalosa (twice) and In Jin Chi (twice). A fight with Hozumi Hasegawa is a distinct possibility in 2007.

6) Nobuo Nashiro – With only seven fights under his belt he took on WBA champion Martin Castillo – and defeated him. Although he’s only fought a total of nine fights, nearly all have been against quality opposition. A victory in a rematch with Castillo would cement his claim as the king of the 115-pound division.

7) Yukata Niida – This light-hitting minimumweight defended his title twice in 2006, winning a technical decision against unbeaten Eriberto Gejon (Tech Win 10) and the other on points over Ronald Barrera (W 12). Scheduled to meet Katsunari Takayama early next year – the best has yet to come for this WBA belt holder.

8) In Jin Chi – Won back the title he lost to Takashi Koshimoto in January from Rudolfo Lopez. While there’s little uncertainty to his skills, at thirty-three, 2007 may provide some insight as to just how much he has left.

9) Yodsanan Sor Nanthachai –Sor Nonthachai is an exciting, top-shelf fighter with an iron chin. Has no trouble making mincemeat of mid-level opposition and deserves a title shot in 2007. Time is running out.

10) Rey Bautista – He’s young, relatively inexperienced in big-time boxing, but will continue to shine in 2007. One of the better prospects in boxing, he should snag a title in 2007.

Asian Fighters Ranked in Ring Magazine

Pound for Pound:

Manny Pacquiao (Philippines): #2

Jr. Lightweight

Manny Pacquiao (Philippines): #1
Yodsanan Sor Nanthachai: #9


Chris John (Indonesia) #1
In Jin Chi (Korea) #3
Takashi Koshimoto (Japan) #5
Hioyuki Enoki (Japan) #7

Jr. Featherweight

Somsak Sithchatchawal (Thailand) #4


Hozumi Hasegawa (Japan) #2
Veeraphol Sahaprom (Japan) #3
Ratanachai Sor Vorapin (Thailand) #6
Poonsawat Kratingdaenggym (Thailand) #10

Jr. Bantamweight

Nobuo Nashiro (Japan) #1
Katsushige Kawashima (Japan) #7
Pramuansak Phosuwan (Thailand) #10


Pongsaklek Wonjongkam (Thailand) #1
Takefumi Sakata (Japan) #7
Daisuke Naito (Japan) #10

Jr. Flyweight

Koki Kameda (Japan) #1


Yukata Naiida (Japan) #2
Eagle Kyowa (Japan/Thai) #4
Katsunari Takayama (Japan) #5
Rodel Mayol (Philippines) #7

Boxing in Thailand

There’s no shortage of boxers in Thailand. With a huge pool of Muay Thai fighters to draw from and several talented amateur boxing prospects turning pro after the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Thailand seems destined to remain a boxing powerhouse in Asia.

The country is known for having tough, determined and disciplined fighters who give their all whenever the step in to the ring. However, consistently losing while fighting abroad and padding their records with no-hopers has done nothing to enhance their reputation.

Whether because of a lack of marketability, a lack of funds or their unwillingness to travel abroad, the vast majority of boxers from Thailand remain a mystery to fans in the west. If anything though, the boxing scene involving Thai fighters will be active. In fact, it’s one of the most active in the world; since 2000, the number of fights has nearly doubled in the country.

The Sweet Science P4P Rankings – Thailand – August 2006

1) Pongsaklek Wonjongkam
2) Poonsawat Kratingdaenggym
3) Somsak Sithchatchawal
4) Wandee Singwancha
5) Sirimongkol Singwancha
6) Yodsanan Sor Nanthachai
7) Veeraphol Sahaprom
8) Pramuansak Phosuwan
9) Terdsak Jandaeng
10) Oleydong Sithamerchai

Current Sweet Science P4P Rankings – Thailand

1) Pongsaklek Wonjongkam (Flyweight) – Definitely the top dog in Thailand

2) Yodsanan Sor Nanthachai (Super Lightweight) – He’s a seasoned fighter who has proven himself in the big-time. He’s one Thai who can fight outside of Asia. He has an abundance of skills and one-punch power. His overall ability and ease in dispatching anyone other than championship caliber get him the runners-up spot.

3) Poonsawat Kratingdaenggym (Super Bantamweight) – After losing to Vladimir Sidorenko he’s bounced back. He’s young, he can punch, but the former interim champion needs to prove himself against a name fighter.

4) Somsak Sithchatchawal (Super Bantamweight) – Was his win over Monshipour a fluke or was Celestino Caballero just that good? Did Sithchatchawal catch Monshipour at the right time and can he rebound from the devastating loss? The jury is still out.

5) Wandee Singwancha (Flyweight) – He doesn’t have much of a punch which will be his downfall in the end. He can box, as was evidenced in his recent victory over Juanito Rubillar, but this won’t be enough. He can no longer make the Jr. Flyweight limit and with no punch he’ll have a hard time competing against the “big boys.” Although he’s now rated second by the WBC, he doesn’t deserve to be.

5) Sirimongkol Singwancha (Super Lightweight) – Get this guy a fight. He’s better than Jose Armando Santa Cruz and would have beat up Inada had the fight taken place. He’ll fight anyone but his biggest obstacle is staying motivated fighting tomato cans in Thailand. Like many Thais, he needs a fight against a name opponent.
6) Wandee Singwancha (Flyweight) – He doesn’t have much of a punch which will be his downfall in the end. He can box, as was evidenced in his recent victory over Juanito Rubillar, but this won’t be enough. He can no longer make the Jr. Flyweight limit and with no punch he’ll have a hard time competing against the “big boys.” Although he’s now rated second by the WBC, he doesn’t deserve to be.

7) Pramuansak Phosuwan (Super Flyweight) – A genuine tough guy. Always calm and focused no matter how heated the battle. But at thirty-eight, he’ll be in trouble should he fight one of the division’s elite.
8) Veeraphol Sahaprom (Bantamweight) – Will be lucky to get another crack at the title. Although he has a puncher’s chance of winning a belt, that’s about all he has left at this point. A third shot at Hasegawa is unlikely.

9) Oleydong Sithamerchai (Minimumweight) – He’s fought better than the usual opponents faced by Thais at his level and he moves up one spot with the departure of Terdsak Jandaeng. He lacks the punch and is in the wrong division to become a superstar. He’ll need to defeat a name opponent to convince me.

10) Saenghiran Lookbanyai / Napapol Kittisakchokchai (Super Bantamweight) – These two square-off in early March, supposedly to see who deserves a shot at Israel Vasquez. Kittisakchokchai has the edge in experience but some feel Lookbanyai has the edge in heart and is the favorite.

Neither has defeated a top twenty fighter and yet are ranked number one and two respectively in the WBC’s world.

In Kittisakchokchoi’s lone shot at the big-time, he was TKO’d in 10 by Oscar Larios. His dreadful performance against Larios and lack of quality opposition leads me to believe Saenghiran might have more of a shot at beating him than some suspect. Regardless, neither of them lasts longer than six rounds with Israel Vasquez.

Honorable Mention: Wethya Sakmuangklang, Denkaosan Kaovichit, Devid Lookmahanak, Nethra Sasiprapa, Chonlatarn Piriyapinyo, Pornsawan Kratingdaenggym

Thai Fighters Ranked in Ring Magazine

Pongsaklek Wonjongkam: #1 Flyweight
Pramuansak Phosuwan: #10 Jr. Bantamweight
Veeraphol Sahaprom: #3 Bantamweight
Ratanachai Sor Vorapin: #6 Bantamweight
Poonsawat Kratingdaenggym: #10 Bantamweight
Somsak Sithchatchawal: #3 Jr. Featherweight
Yodsanan Sor Nanthachai: #9 Lightweight

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Articles of 2006

Iceman Stops Tito Ortiz Win Streak



LAS VEGAS—UFC light heavyweight champion Chuck “Iceman” Liddell’s fists proved too much for Huntington Beach’s Tito Ortiz who was stopped in the third round before a sold out crowd at the MGM Garden Arena on Saturday.

The punching machine Liddell (20-3, 13 KOs) repeated his victory in UFC 66 over the much-improved grappler Ortiz who has improved his punching and blocking. Ortiz was trying to avenge his loss of April 2004.

Despite all the new weapons displayed by Ortiz it wasn’t enough as Liddell pummeled the former champion and retained his title with a technical knockout at 3:59 of the third round. Referee Mario Yamasaki stopped the bout.

“This was the most satisfying victory of my career,” said Liddell, 36, of Santa Barbara. “Tito came back real tough.”

Ortiz (15-5, 8 KOs), a former wrestler, worked on his boxing technique knowing he would need it against the former boxer Liddell. But Liddell’s experience allowed him to find the right moment to pounce on Ortiz.

“I had him hurt, I just kept throwing punches,” said Liddell who also knocked down Ortiz in the first round with a left hook.

Ortiz was gracious in defeat.

“Chuck is the best fighter Pound for Pound in the (mixed martial arts) world,” said Ortiz, 31, who suffered a gash on the side of his left eye from a punch. “I’m disgusted by myself. I let my fans down.”

Other bouts

Underdog Keith Jardine (12-3-1) knocked out Forrest Griffin (13-4) at 4:41 of the first round in their light heavyweight showdown. A right uppercut followed by a left hook wobbled Griffin who was sent to the floor by a barrage of punches. On the ground Jardine landed right after right until referee John McCarthy stopped the fight for a technical knockout.

“I couldn’t believe he was hurt,” said Jardine about Griffin who is known for his resiliency. “I was so nervous coming into this fight, but now I know I belong here.”

Canada’s Jason McDonald (18-7) choked out Chris Leben (15-3) in a middleweight bout that was up for grabs. Though Leben seemed to control the fight with stunning left hands, once the fight went to the ground McDonald managed a chokehold at 4:03 of the second round. Referee Steve Mazagatti saw Leben was unconscious and stopped the fight.

Former UFC heavyweight champion Andrei Arlovski (12-5) caught Brazil’s Mario Cruz (2-2) with a sneak right hand while both were tangled on the ground. Then the Belarusian pummeled Cruz until referee Herb Dean stopped the fight at 3:15 of the first round.

Third season winner of the Ultimate Fighter television reality season Michael Bisping (12-0) of Great Britain won by technical knockout over Eric Shafer (9-2-2) at 4:29 of the first round. A knee knocked Shafer groggy then Bisping knocked him to the ground and pounded him. Referee Mario Yamasaki stopped the bludgeoning.

Thiago Alves (16-4) caught Peru’s Tony De Souza (15-5) with a knee as he attempted to dive for his legs in a welterweight contest. After that it was pretty much over as Alves pummeled De Souza at 1:10 of the second round forcing referee John McCarthy to halt the bout.

Gabriel Gonzago (7-1) proved too strong for Carmelo Marrero (6-1) in a heavyweight bout. At 3:22 of the first round Gonzago of Massachusetts manipulated his way into arm bar forcing Pennsylvania’s Marrero to tap out.

Japan’s Yushin Okami (19-3) pounded Georgia’s Rory Singer (11-6) into submission at 4:03 of the third round of a middleweight bout. Okami seemed the more-rounded fighter with effective kicks to the head and more accurate punching.

Christian Wellisch (8-2) jumped to a quick start with an accurate left hook that rattled Australia’s Anthony Perosh (5-3) in a heavyweight bout. During the first round it seemed the Sacramento fighter might end the fight but the Aussie hung tough. Wellisch won by unanimous decision.

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